Want to go past the recruiter’s algorithms? Avoid unusual job titles in your CV

Want to go past the recruiter’s algorithms? Avoid unusual job titles in your CV

Hays notes the growing use of data science in screening job applications, but there are ways to optimise your CV for the algorithms

Ensure your CV is in the accepted format as an alternative style might not contain the content AI recognises

Four in five Kiwi jobseekers have or plan to adapt their CV and online profiles for initial screening by an algorithm, according to a survey by Hays.

The recruiter says an online poll of 847 New Zealanders found 29 per cent indicated they have already adapted their CV and online profiles.

Another 55 per cent plan to do so in the coming 12 months, and just 16 per cent have no plans to adapt.

“Artificial intelligence (AI) and automated machine learning algorithms are being utilised in every industry, including recruitment,” says Adam Shapley, managing director of Hays in New Zealand.

“One job ad can elicit hundreds, sometimes thousands, of responses,” says Shapley.

“Many of these may be inappropriate but all must be screened in order to identify the suitable candidates. If a recruiter does not advertise, they’ll instead use digital technology and data science to examine large amounts of data to find the most suitable people for a job.

“With the aid of AI and algorithms, such time consuming processes now take seconds, allowing recruiters and hiring managers to provide a more personal service and engage with skilled and experienced professionals.”

Shapley shares ways to help applications make it past the algorithms:

Add keywords: Include in your CV and online profile keywords relevant to the job/s you apply for. If you aren’t sure of suitable keywords, look at job descriptions for your ideal role. Don’t forget keywords for the required soft skills, too.

Use an accepted CV format: Ensure your CV is in the accepted format as an alternative style might not contain the content AI recognises, meaning your application could fail to make the shortlist.

Avoid unusual job titles: Even if your official job title is a little unconventional, use an industry-standard title in your CV and online profile so it will be recognised by an algorithm.

Describe achievements: Use these keywords throughout your CV and online profile to describe your achievements. For example, “I used my communication skills to liaise with colleagues in other departments, then applied my analytical nous to develop business case proposals and tenders accordingly.”

Make sure you link keywords with proof that you did your previous jobs well. A simple trick is to combine an action verb with a keyword. For example, instead of writing that you “always achieved your target goals”, try “I surpassed target goals by 20 per cent in quarter 1 and 18 per cent year-on-year.”

Utilise LinkedIn: Create a strong LinkedIn profile. Many people leave the summary field blank, but you should use the full character count to highlight your successes, skills and value. Of course, use appropriate keywords here, too.

Don’t job-hop: Unless you are a temporary worker, do not change jobs frequently. Hiring managers do value stability and turnover can be factored into the criteria AI screens for.

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